Designed for Mac users with an iPod but no PDA who want to do paperless geocaching complete with descriptions, log entries and hints. Uses the iPod’s “Notes” feature to display complete cache description pages. gpx2ipod is built on top of gpsbabel.
Note: I’m not likely to continue development of gpx2ipod, for two reasons: 1) MacCaching finally grew the ability to store cache metadata in the iPod’s “Notes” feature rather than in the address book (which was the whole impetus behind my developing gpx2ipod to begin with), and 2) I switched to a Garmin Colorado a few months ago, which displays description, logs, and hints directly in the GPS. I no longer need to offload that data to the iPod, so my itch has been scratched. Do with this software what you will!
Mac-based paperless caching for people who own an iPod but not a PDA.
Batch-converts a pile of .gpx files to plain text for use with the iPod’s “Notes” feature.
Super-fast — cut your geocaching prep time to a few minutes.
gpx2ipod handles both individual and Pocket Query (multiple-cache).gpx files.
Cache files will display alphabetically on the iPod for easy access in the field.
gpx2ipod can inject generated text files directly into your iPod (most users) or into a local “output” folder (you might not have an iPod but might still want the text files for other purposes).
gpx2ipod is a Terminal application (shell script), but can be run painlessly with a double-click — no shell experience required.
gpx2ipod is available either with or without the gpsbabel command-line binary bundled. gpsbabel is licenced under the GPL, and thus so is gpx2ipod. See LICENSE for info.
Who this is for
- You’re a Mac user who has an iPod but not a PDA.
- You want to do paperless geocaching.
- You want complete descriptions, log entries and hints while out on the trail.
- Your iPod has this great “Notes” feature, but you haven’t found any OS X software to get GPX files into a format you can read in the iPod’s Notes reader. MacCaching is wonderful, but it outputs to the iPod’s “Contacts” system, which means no logs and no choice of whether to encrypt hints. It also intermingles hundreds of geocache data files with your existing pile of Contacts – very messy. GPSBabel+ has a similar “Export to v-card feature” with similar problems. The iPod’s “Notes” feature seems a much better choice to me.
Mac OS X. This script will not run on Windows or Linux (with modifications, gpx2ipod could be made to run under Cygwin or Linux).
A copy of the free and open source gpsbabel (version 1.3.4 or higher). Thanks to all contributors to gpsbabel for your hard work on this amazing workhorse! Huge thanks also to Robert Lipe, who added gpsbabel’s ability to split multi-location files into individual files, so gpx2ipod wouldn’t be stuck with the 99-split limitation in the Unix “
An iPod with Storage Mode enabled. Storage Mode lets you use your iPod as a hard drive. If your iPod does not show up as disk volume on the Desktop when plugged in, go to iTunes and select “Enable disk use,” then click Apply.
Unzip this folder and drag it into your Applications folder (or wherever you like). Then drag the gpx2ipod folder icon from your Applications folder into your Dock for quick access.
- If you downloaded gpx2ipod with gpsbabel:You’re good to go! Skip to Usage.
- If you downloaded gpx2ipod without gpsbabel:gpx2ipod requires the gpsbabel command line application, (version 1.3.4 or higher). When you install GPSBabel (probably into your Applications folder), you’ll see two files: GPSBabel+, which is a graphical application, and gpsbabel itself, which is a command-line application. There are two ways to make gpsbabel available to gpx2ipod:The easy way: Select the file “gpsbabel” in that folder and copy it (don’t move it!) to the
binfolder inside the gpx2ipod folder.The hard (but better) way: If you’re comfortable at the command line and prefer not to duplicate the binary, you can create a symlink instead, for example:
ln -s "/Applications/GPS Babel/gpsbabel" /Users/[yourlogin]/Desktop/gpx2ipod/bin/gpsbabel
Modify that command to match your setup. Note: Mac aliases won’t work – you’ll need a proper symlink.
- Download .gpx files from geocaching.com and move or copy them into the “input” folder. You can mix and match individual .gpx files and Pocket Query (multi-cache) files in the same input folder. gpx2ipod includes a “samples” folder for testing – copy some or all of these into the “input” folder and let ‘er rip.
- Double-click the
gpx2ipod“squid” and let it do its thing.
- If this is the first time you’ve run gpx2ipod, you’ll be asked to set a few preferences, such as whether you want to include log files, whether to encrypt hints, whether to copy the original .gpx files into an “archive” folder, and (most importantly) the system path to your iPod (the script will let you choose your iPod from a list). For the yes/no questions, use 0 for “no” and 1 for “yes.”
- If the gpsbabel binary can’t be found, or is an old version, the script will tell you and then halt.
- If the iPod you selected during Setup can’t be found, you’ll be given the option to mount it now, or, alternatively, to have generated files sent to an “output” folder instead.
- When everything’s in order, gpx2ipod will crunch through all those .gpx files, spit out text files optimally formatted for iPod use, and copy them into the Notes folder on your iPod. On future runs of gpx2ipod, your last-used preferences will be displayed as the script launches. Hit [Return] to accept the settings, or C to change them.
- Go geocaching! You’ll find the cache entries on the iPod in Extras > Notes.
This version does not load .gpx files into your GPSr – it just generates text files for use on the iPod. A future version may load the same files into the GPSr.
v1.3 – 9/15/2007
Now retains character formatting for international character sets. Default is UTF-8, but any character set supported by gpsbabel can be selected in preferences. Tested against Swedish .gpx samples (see GCY7XZ-Swedish_chars.gpx in Samples folder). Many thanks to Bengt Bäverman for excellent contributions on this feature.
v1.2 – 9/15/2007
Bug fix for other cache name characters that would generate illegal filenames.
v1.1 – 9/08/2007
No longer generates errors when encountering caches with slashes in their names. Now works properly when installed in a path containing a space (such as “/Applications/GPS Apps”).
v1.0 – 8/03/2007
Renamed project to “gpx2ipod.” Now requires gpsbabel 1.3.4 or higher, taking advantage of new gpsbabel “splitoutput” feature in order to overcome the
cut command’s 99-split limit (thanks Robert Lipe!). Now double-clickable – much better user experience. Now copies generated files directly to iPod. Now stores user preferences in a config file. Now optionally copies original .gpx files into an “archive” folder for future use.
v0.2 – 7/17/2007
Now handles both individual .gpx files and Pocket Query (multiple-cache) .gpx files.
v0.1 – 7/14/2007